NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — If you have COVID-19 and are quarantining at home, it’s still possible to cast your ballot on election day.
Tennessee Elections Coordinator, Mark Goins, says the state advised all counties to designate a specific location for voters with coronavirus to cast their ballots. Most are at your local election commission offices.
“There’s nothing in the law book that says someone can’t vote because they’re sick. So we have to make accommodations for that,” Goins said. “You don’t want to put folks that have COVID in a polling location where voters who aren’t sick are. Or risk getting poll officials sick.”
Goins says you should call ahead and make an appointment to vote if you are sick on November 3rd.
“If you’re COVID-19 positive, call your local election commission. So the county that you’re in, call them and set an appointment up. Because we don’t want everyone coming in at one time we want to have an orderly process,” Goins says.
For example, in Davidson County COVID-19 voters will pull up outside the election commission building off of Murfreesboro Pike. A poll worker wearing PPE will greet them with a ballot and disposable pen and give them the option to vote from their car.
Davidson County is requiring proof of a positive COVID-19 test dated after October 27th to qualify for this method of voting. Goins says that is not the case in every county. That’s why you should call ahead for further instruction.
Goins says the poll workers who will be handing voting materials to people with COVID-19 have volunteered to do so. They’re also receiving hazard pay since they are knowingly being exposed to people with the virus.
If you’re thinking of trying to cut the long lines by claiming you have COVID-19, Goins says keep in mind you’re potentially exposing yourself to germs.
“You are taking yourself into a location where you know there are individuals that have COVID-19 that have voted there. So I certainly hope that no one would lie,” Goins said.
County Election Commission Offices:
- Davidson: Main line (615) 862-8800 / COVID Hotline (615) 862-7777
- Rutherford: (615) 898-7743
- Wilson: (615) 444–0216
- Williamson: (615) 790-5711
- Cheatham: (615) 792-5770
- Robertson: (615) 384-5592
- Sumner: (615) 452-1456
- Dickson: (615) 671-1146
COVID-19 in Tennessee
(This reflects what the TDH is reporting each day at 2 p.m. CST )
Stay with News 2 for continuing coverage of the COVID-19 Pandemic.